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Sunday, June 28, 2020

Facebook Takes Down Videos Targeting Public Health Officials

Kevin Baxter at LAT:
Facebook, facing a boycott from advertisers and growing pressure from employees over the posting of material that incites violence, has removed at least four videos targeting public health officials who have called for people to stay home and wear facial coverings to slow the spread of COVID-19.
Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg has long resisted calls to regulate political content on the popular website, which has more than 221 million users in the U.S. But the stepped-up rhetoric of content on the website and an expanding advertising boycott that added Verizon, Unilever, Hershey and Coca-Cola in the last two days has forced Zuckerberg to back down.
Facebook stock fell seven percentage points Friday.
“If we determine the content may lead to violence …. we’re going to take that content down no matter who said it,” Zuckerberg told CBS News.
The inciteful videos Facebook removed Thursday were from a group called the Freedom Angels Foundation, which is known for its opposition to California’s efforts to mandate vaccinations. CNN, which reviewed the videos, said the posts make a number of false claims, including that children are being removed from their homes because of the coronavirus, face masks cause people to pass out, and COVID-19 is not a virus.